Prometheon Pharma develops medicated patches as alternative to injections

ALACHUA – As a teenager Stephen Hsu was fascinated by the Greek myth of Prometheus, the titan whose gift of fire brought mankind out of darkness. Years later, Hsu became the CEO of his own biotechnology company, helping to brighten the pharmaceutical market with medicated patches.

Prometheon Pharma, LLC develops novel medicated adhesive patches that administer therapeutic biomolecules, such as insulin, that are normally injected under a patient’s skin.

“Our delivery system is the first passive patch technology that offers patients a painless, needle-free and non-invasive alternative to frequent injections of perishable large molecule drugs,” Hsu said.

Prometheon Pharma’s drug patch, Topix™, is the first to incorporate heat-sensitive properties that maintain the stability of the medication at room temperature, Hsu said. Once the patch is on a patient’s skin, it melts into a dermoadhesive gel that delivers a dose of the drug through the skin.

The company provides products mainly for pharmaceutical manufacturers who sublicense the Topix™ technology to co-develop patches that deliver their particular drugs. However, Prometheon Pharma also has a drug discovery division that is pursuing the development of anti-obesity drugs.

Prometheon's technology was developed in Hsu’s laboratory at the University of Florida’s College of Medicine in 2010. Hsu officially founded Prometheon Pharma on May 9, 2011. The company currently resides in UF’s Sid Martin Incubator in Alachua’s Progress Corporate Park.

Hsu said basing his company in Alachua was attractive due to the many resources available in Progress Corporate Park, including a low monthly lease, extensive shared equipment and facilities and administrative and training support through regular seminars.

Hsu is proud of the company’s role in the Alachua community.

“Prometheon's role in the Alachua community is to provide employment for local talent, draw industry and investor interest to the area and to add to the diversity of existing biotech platforms developed by other local companies,” Hsu said.

The company also provides internships to undergraduate students interested in careers in biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries.

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